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Fujitsu Siemens Esprimo Mobile V5535 review

Verdict:

Review Date: 16 Apr 2009

Price when reviewed: £555

Supplier: http://www.laptopsdirect.co.uk

Reviewed By: Barry de la Rosa

Our Rating 3 stars out of 5

Fujitsu Siemens' Esprimo Mobile V5535 is a business laptop with a smart, two-tone design that really stands out in this group.

Sadly, build quality isn't quite up to the standard we'd expect at this price. The DVD drive tray isn't flush with the case when closed and the cut-out strip along the front edge of the case means that the audio ports and wireless switch stick out and could snag against fabric.

The keyboard feels spongey, which is a shame as the keys are large and in a standard layout. The touchpad is large, but the buttons are flush with the case (and hard to locate without looking) and have too little travel.

Putting fit and finish to one side, the V5535 is an impressive laptop. It topped the PCMark Vantage Overall chart and its battery life of three hours and 38 minutes is respectable here. With Vista Business installed, the V5535 scored below average in the TV & Movies section of the tests, as the lack of Media Center means there's no MPEG2 decoder.

With a 250GB hard disk, four USB ports and Bluetooth, the V5535 is relatively well specified, but it doesn't have a Draft-N WiFi adaptor. A lack of multimedia ports such as HDMI or S/PDIF is par for the course in a business laptop and the V5535 makes no attempt to cater for home entertainment.

Like the other business laptops here, the V5535's 1,280x800 display has a matt finish, which cuts out reflections but makes colours a bit muted. This isn't helped by a distinct backlight bleed at the bottom edge of the screen and generally uneven backlighting.

Despite its great performance, the Esprimo Mobile V5535 is let down by its bouncy keyboard and below-par build quality. It has most of the features you'd expect in a business laptop, but HP's Compaq 6735s has similar specifications and costs £65 less. For just £20 more, Lenovo's SL500 is better built and has a 3G modem, making it the better choice.

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